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Martin Bashir

News/Business. Journalist Martin Bashir uncovers breaking news stories. New.

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Karen 11, Us 10, America 9, Krystal 5, Obama 5, Geico 4, John Lewis 4, Dr. Peterson 3, Washington 3, Purina 3, Kate 3, Usaa 3, Nra 3, Selma 2, Toure 2, Msnbc 2, China 2, Nbc 2, United States 2, Limbaugh 2,
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  MSNBC    Martin Bashir    News/Business. Journalist Martin  
   Bashir uncovers breaking news stories. New.  

    January 18, 2013
    1:00 - 2:00pm PST  

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athletic gods the way we waonce did. nowadays sooner or later, they'll let you down. is it because media scrutiny has grown sharper? maybe. guys in the past had many misdeeds covered up by media that was complicit but then again widespread doping and covering up molestation and the systematic torturing and killing of dogs means many of the worst scandals in sports history has happened in recent years. has america changed? have the rewards grown so large that athletes have become greetier and more craven? maybe. do you really think manti wasn't aware this girlfriend story wouldn't get him the attention and love he may believe he deserves? i think this scandal could be indicative of serious character flaws. i mean, if the answers were simple, he would have already sat down with oprah and told her. the story is so silly though, it begs us to joke about it. my man nick said manti te'o's
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girlfriend is coming to take away your guns. and as seth meier said, we all have to remember that a person who never existed is dead. and now a woman who will never have to sit down with oprah and confess her sins, karen finney. >> thanks, guys. and good afternoon. i'm karen finney in for martin bashir on this friday, january the 18th. the polls are in, americans have spoken. they want gun safety, and that's one more reason the right is pulling its hair out. >> we're going to let their voices, the voice of the american people, be heard. >> you're right to own a firearm should not interfere with my right to live. >> this is a president i think who has drunk the kool-aid. he is feeling right now high on his own power. >> there is the video just right there. it will make perfect sense in a couple minutes when we talk about the news. >> are the president's kids more important than yours? >> to have talk about the
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president's children, to use that somehow to try to make a political point i think is reprehensible. >> high capacity magazines don't have a pragetcle sporting purpose or hunting purpose. you have 12 rounds. it means you've already missed the deer 11 times. >> i think it's really sad to see the president of the united states exploiting the murter of children. >> you should practice up your aim at that point. you don't deserve to have a gun period if you're that bad. >> that's who they're after, gun owners. >> on my first day on the job, i had to eat rocky mountain oysters, do you remember that? >> we don't benefit from ignorance. ♪ >> as president obama prepares to begin his second term, he's got a solid 52% approval rating and a brand new official portrait, a bit more gray hair, but a big smile and despite a
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formidable agenda, including a renewed battle over gun safety and new polling, shows that the massacre at sandy hook elementary school is boosting broad support for stronger gun laws. a brand new nbc/"wall street journal" poll show asthma jort of americans, that's 56%, think gun control laws should be tightened in this country. in thames of specific gun proposals being considered, there's even wider support requiring background checks on all gun purchases, eliminating the 40% of gun sales that currently get no checks at all has overwhelming support. a "new york times" poll finds 9 in 10 americans support such a law. including 9 in 10 who say there is a gun in their household. a ban on high capacity magazines is backed by more than 6 in 10 and by a majority of gun owning householtz. 53% say they support a ban on semiautomatic weapons and in if youtown, aurora, tucson, or any of the some 90 gun deaths each day weren't enough, there's perhaps a new poster boy for the gun problem in america. his name is richard schmidt, a
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white supreme sibs with a felony conviction for manslaughter who managed to acquire an arsenal of 18 assault weapons and other firearms along with more than 40,000 rounds of ammunition. nbc news national investigative correspondent michael isikoff joins us now with more on the story. michael, this is a story kind of blowing open this week. what's the latest? >> well, look, this is one that had been below radar. the fbi counterterrorism agents actually had raided richard schmidt's sporting goods store last december, just a few days after newton, actually, and arrested him on charges related to trafficking in counterfeit goods. he was trafficking in nfl jerseys that actually had been manufactured in china, but it turns out there was a lot more to the story. he was a white supremacist, had links to the neo-nazi movement.
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they found all sorts of neo-nazi paraphernalia at his house, a video of the national socialist movement annual convention, waffen paraphernalia and this arsenal of 18 weapons, high capacity magazines, 40,000 rounds of ammunition, and here is the kicker. he was a convicted felon. he had been convicted of manslaughter in 1990, gone to prison for a shooting death of a hispanic man in a traffic dispute. he was somebody who was not eligible to own any firearms at all, and yet somehow he managed to acquire these weapons. this goes directly to that -- one of those proposals that you were highlighting before, universal background checks. if he had gone into a gun store and tried to buy these weapons legally and openly, a background check would have stopped him. >> right. >> but if he goes to a gun show,
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if he gets it from a private dealer, that background check never takes place. >> well, certainly we'll learn more in the days ahead and supporting the president's proposals no doubt. nbc's michael isikoff, thank you. >> thank you. i want to grinning in our panel now. in philadelphia lehigh university professor james peterson, a contributor for thegrio.com. and in washington democratic strategist julian epstein. dr. peterson, i want to start with you. obviously federal agents are still learning more about how this neo-nazi convicted felon was able to amass an arsenal that i'd say deadly doesn't even begin to describe. it would seem to reinforce, as i was mentioning, the president's proposals, and yet the line from the gun control opponents seems to be these measures feel good but they just don't do anything. what's your response? >> my response is the nra is trying to sell guns and they're going to continue to try to sell guns and they're going to try to use these situations to sell
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more guns. we need to know where they are. they're very disciplined in terms ever their messaging, but to expect anything other than buy more guns coming from the nra is actually at this point insane. we need to take a closer look at the president's directives and his executive orders. they make sense. they would address a situation like this. one thing that's interesting, karen, we haven't talked much about the militia groups and extremist groups and how they factor into the discussion around gun control but we don't have to go too far back into our history to look at things like church burnings or look at oklahoma city bombing, these groups and these kind of individuals can do a lot of destruction. it's race based and doesn't necessarily mean it's better or worse than something like newtown, but at the end of the day the reason we need comprehensive gun safety is to try to stave off attacks and destruction and carnage by individuals like this guy right here. >> and certainly these are the kinds of people the president was talking about when he said not letting guns get into the hands of people who should not
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have them. >> that's right. >> julian, the obama administration knows they have to keep the public pressure on this issue. the president says he's going to lean in, he's going to campaign. they have released video from the kids who wrote letters to the president about guns. let's take a look. >> bullets don't have eyes. it can hurt anyone. i am really scared of guns and criminals around the world. i love my country, and i want everyone to be happy and safe. no guns, no guns, no guns, no guns. >> obviously, in addition to that we've got parents, you've got gabby giffords and her husband mark announcing a new initial, obama for america also announced they're going to do action for america as an advocacy organization. this is their first project. but i guess my question to you is, is that going to be enough? what will it take, if this isn't enough, to keep this on the front burner, to get real action, what's it going to take? >> i think it's three things, karen. i think it's bold leadership from the president, which we're seeing. i think it is the attention of
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news organizations and shows like this show. and then, three, i think it's going to be creating the street heat that is clearly out there right now. what is different from what's happening today from say 1998 when we were trying to move legislation after columbine is the politics have changed so dramatically. if you look at the pew poll, the proposals on gun violence legislation range somewhere between 60% and 90% of the public support right now. when the nra says we have a lot of supporters, i think obama's answer is, guess what, i have a lot more supporters, and the fact that jim messina and others are taking the obama campaign and translating this for an obama for america campaign that can begin to translate the enormous capacity out there, grassroots, social media, otherwise, tend of the day what i think we're going to have to see is very much what happened with mothers against drunk driving in the 1980s when mothers of victims of drunk driving deaths bound together in this country and created
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pressure in local communities to pressure president reagan to sign something and they changed the politics. that is clearly out there. it's just a question of tapping it at this point. >> we have that public support and that's part of why the nra has been so virulent in their response trying to shut down the voices of real people, of children, of victims, of mothers because they know that is -- they are the most potent messenge messengers. >> that's right. i think what you may be referring to are the initiatives in the states that some states are passing that says if you enforce federal gun laws, you're violating state laws. we went through this with the arizona immigration case. the states cannot enact laws that overtake the supremacy clause of federal laws that are passed, and, two, this argument that the nra and others keep making that you're encroaching on the second amendment is just false. the one case they rely on is the
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heller case. all heller says is you have a right to have a handgun in your household. scalia and the conservatives there invited congress and state legislatures to do the kinds of things obama is doing today. people who make the argument have no idea what they're talking about. >> ironically president obama, a constitutional scholar and scalia are in the same place on this issue. yes, you have the right, but not without responsibilities. okay. dr. peterson -- >> yes. >> i don't know if it gets more bizarre than this. i feel like every day there's a new bizarre from rush limbaugh. he has taken a very strange twist in his defense of gun enthusiasts. he's now claiming that they are the martin luther kings in this civil rights fight. >> if a lot of african-americans back in the '60s had guns and the legal right to use them for self-defense, do you think they would have needed selma? if john lewis had had a gun,
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would he have been beat upside the head on the bridge? >> i have to tell you -- >> karen, listen, this is disgusting. first of all, it's not original -- >> rush is now -- it sounds like he's trying to be a member of the black panthers. this is ridiculous. >> well, there's that irony as well. but it's not original. he's taking it from the comments from the other right wing nut job who was talking about if slaves had guns. first of all, there are plenty of shotgun owners during the civil rights era, but to reduce john lewis' service to this country and the civil rights movement and the black experience and the overall american experience in this country to him getting beat upside the head is disgusting and offensive. this is a man who served his country through civil rights and through service in the congress. to reduce his life to that to me is unacceptable. >> i agree. as you may know, i actually went with john lewis on his annual pilgrimage. we crossed the bridge in selma, heard the stories from him. the other thing that's so infuriating about this, not
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surprising coming from someone like rush limbaugh, is just the antithesis of what john lewis' whole life has been about in terms of not resorting to violence. >> he completely mischaracterized the civil rights movement. this is about civil disobedience, and it's disrespecting that legacy for him to speak the words out of his mouth. >> julian, i want to switch gears. how much is this about -- we continue to hear the gun folks kind of gin up they're trampling our rights, but while they're doing it it's boosting sales. the nra reportedly got $1 million from one ammunition company through a partnership deal. essentially, this is profit-driven politics. not only does it profit the gun salesmen, but also the nra gets $1 back on some of these programs. >> right. well, as we just commented on, the idea that this is
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encroaching on the second amendment is just false because, as we pointed out, the supreme court has actually invited these kind of regulations. your explanation is absolutely right. what this is doing is this is driving sales, and i think what i would refer to as blood money for gun manufacturers and what has been most revealing about all of this is that the nra is now widely recognized, widely perceived as not representing gun owners but representing gun manufacturers. and you see it with these idiotic statements, not just the ad on the president's children, the silly statements like rush limbaugh, this idea that he now is for arming the black panther movement. that's quite new. but also in addition to what dr. peterson said, martin luther king opposed gun sales. he was very much for gun violence laws and rules. so it's just -- they don't even begin to know where to start unraveling all these mistruths these desperate gun nuts are
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putting out there, but we know they are losing the public debate and isolating themselves and that increasingly there's not so much a silent majority, there's a very vocal majority wanting some common sense changes. >> they lose the public debate. let's follow the money on this one. i'm going to remain a bit cynical. >> exactly. >> james peterson and julian epstein, thanks so much for joining me. >> thank you, karen. next, how to talk to women. it's a new class being offered at the republicans' annual retreat. stay with us. >> what do you say we go out on a date, have some chicken, maybe some sex. you know, see what happens. >> oh, let me get this over here. sorry. there it is. ...so as you can see, geico's customer satisfaction is at 97%. mmmm tasty. and cut! very good.
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if we're going to win in the future, republicans need to do better among latinos, and they need to do better among women, particularly single women. >> we need to fight for 100% of the electorate, not 53%, not 52%, but 100%. >> oh, yes. after the election republicans were acting and talking like they understood why they got drubbed at the polls. not enough women and minority voters who here is the solution they came up with. hold a three-day retreat at a former plantation and hire a pollster to come in and train gop members on the fine points of seducing the female vote. now, for starters, they're saying rape is a four-letter word. don't say it. it's good advice, fellows. joining us, joan walsh, editor at salon.com and krystal ball host of msnbc's "the cycle."
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krystal, you ran for congress. did you have to be told not to talk about rape? did you have talking points on that? >> i don't recall anyone specifically sitting me down and saying don't talk about rape, but it was sort of understood. i don't think in the candidate training schools they normally have to go through, don't say rape, don't make women seem like they're sluts if they take birth control, don't call them prostitutes. >> although we're learning there are a number of efforts like this in terms of the gop candidate training that basically is centered on don't say rape but not changing the policies. >> exactly. let's talk about it in a different way. it struck me there was a conservative cruise after election day where scott rasmussen gave a panel on how to talk to women and minorities and some of the advice was great things like speak to them like they're adults. >> oh, nice. >> it's a start. >> hey, you know what, i'll take
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it. all right. so, joan, you know, of course, republicans like to blame republicans. it has nothing to do with the fact they don't know how to talk about issues or don't have good positions on issues. it's really the media for all their ills. if it weren't for the media, there would still just be one woman on their women and minorities panel that held as part of the retreat. >> we did not organize that. >> what -- but what does that say? they had to be gilthed into adding two more people in the same way, frankly, they had to be guilted into adding a woman to a leadership position when they announced their chairs for their various committees in the house. >> right, and they thought it was fine to talk about contraception without a woman on the panel. i mean, they do this over and over and over again, and, you know, karen, you know this as well as i do. i think it's great that they're talking about rape because we're really getting to hear what they're saying. i watch my old friend dick armey on "hardball" a couple weeks ago say that the solution for the
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republican party when it comes to women and minorities and social issues is basically don't talk about what you believe. they have figured out that what they believe is super unpopular and scares people, not just women, but especially women, and so that's the answer is don't talk about it, hide it, rather than change the policy, have women come and talk to you about why you're -- your approach and your policies are so heinous. >> i have this vision they have like a board where they're writing up here is the words not to use, here are the phrases you can use, and limiting them just to those. >> i'm sure they are. >> but, krystal, to that point, republicans are basically taking the position that this is all about not their policies, it is about their language and communications. but they had this panel called discussion of successful communications. but their ideas so far that we've heard, defunding planned
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parenthood, they went back to that, personhood amendment. how are they going to spin that to women? we're not stupid. >> that's the problem is for so long they actually got away with slowly eroding women's rights and women's options, and then suddenly in 2011 really we had this awakening where people woke up and said, oh, my gosh, in these state legislatures that the republicans have taken control of and now in the new congress, we are seeing an unprecedented attack on women's rights. it was a real wake-up call. they overstepped, and we saw -- and it actually sort of started with suzanne g. komen, ending their relationship with planned parenthood. then we had transvaginal probes, and then people started looking even deeper and seeing that 2011 had been a record year, record-breaking in an awful way in that it was the high water mark for the number of anti-choice, anti-women provisions passed in state legislatures. i think people's eyes are open
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now to what the republican agenda is. they can't just not talk about it because they're going to be asked specifically about it. >> i think that's right. and, joan, to you, to that point, as you know, i serve on the board of pro choice america. you wrote about this not that long after the election, and the fact that in this election choice was such an important issue, and to krystal's point, it wasn't just -- the measures were outrageous, but the way they were talking about it, legitimate rape and then even recently saying that wasn't so bad, was just as bad. >> right. oh, absolutely. i mean, you know, they really did succeed in galvanizing women and focusing attention on what they've done to their own party over the years. you know, i really think we have to remember that george h.w. bush was a contributor to planned parenthood and sponsored birth control legislation when he was in congress. leading figures in the republican party used to be pro-choice and certainly pro-contraception so there's been a gradual takeover of the party.
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some of it has been quiet, some of it has been quite obvious, but this is the year when they felt emboldened to come out and tell us what they thought about rape and personhood and violence against women and they were rebuked for it. they're going to spend a lot of time changing their language, but i don't see any signs they really got the message that it's about their policies. >> i hope they change their policies but also talk about women with a little bit more respect. i don't think they're off to a good start because they're in the state of transvaginal probes but you never know. krystal ball and joan walsh, thank you. a programming note, tune into msnbc throughout the weekend and, of course, all damond for our special inauguration coverage. and stay with us. we have much more ahead. kate and i have been married for 15 years. that's 3 moves, 5 jobs, 2 newborns. it's no wonder i'm getting gray. but kate -- still looks like...kate. with nice'n easy, all they see is you -- in one simple step, nice'n easy with colorblend technology,
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we've just learned that at least one american has died in the hostage standoff at a gas facility in algeria. the rescue operation is ongoing and many of the details are
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still evolving. at a pros conference today secretary clinton reiterated this is an act of terror and stressed the importance of international cooperation against a common threat. we'll bring you new information as it comes into the newsroom. becoming a fulltime indoor cat wasn't easy for atti. but he had purina cat chow indoor. he absolutely loved it. and i knew he was getting everything he needed to stay healthy indoors. and after a couple of weeks, i knew we were finally home! [ female announcer ] purina cat chow indoor. and for a delicious way to help maintain a healthy weight, try new purina cat chow healthy weight.
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we're more than 78,000 people looking out for more than 70 million americans. that's health in numbers. unitedhealthcare. from president obama -- here are today's "top lines." >> what should we be doing to make sure our children are safe. >> we put the brakes on anything that takes away a person's second amendment right. >> members of congress i think are going to have to examine their own conscience. >> they're not going to be able to get an assault weapons ban. >> a pretty effective way of ginning up fear. the federal government is taking all your guns away. >> limiting your second amendment rights is priority one. >> wet dream plan. >> 1776 will commence again. >> one inch further i'm going to start killing people. >> why would you ever want to take away this man's guns? >> a dark vein of intolerance in some parts of the party. >> colin powell used to be a
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republican. i don't think he is any longer. >> they engaged in birtherism. >> wia is weapons of mass destruction has been found, it was colin powell. >> we have the same murder rate of belgium. >> martin luther king would agree with me if he were alive today. >> how did he die again? if only the for instance brought to this country in chains had been allowed to have guns. >> how sick are these people? >> are the president's kids more important than yours? >> i think the ad is spot on. >> it wasn't about the president's daughters. >> i think it's reprehensible. >> some of the people who run that thing are sick. >> these are some pretty smart letters from some pretty smart young people. >> answer all their letters to santa claus. >> he could apologize for burdening them with millions of dollars of debt. >> a form of child abuse. >> reminds me of saddam hussein when he used kids.
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>> just doesn't have the guts to admit it, he doesn't believe in the second amendment. >> anointed himself king gun snatcher the magnificent. >> they will be warning of a tyrannical all out assault on liberty. >> when tyrants want something done, they generally don't ask. >> president obama may have this king complex. we're going to make sure it doesn't happen. >> tyrants don't have to fight that [ bleep ] hard for ohio. >> i'm a pretty friendly guy and i like a good party. >> it's getting crazy. let's get to our panel. we're joined by toure, co-host of "the cycle" and msnbc contributor jonathan capehart of the "washington post." jonathan or jon, as martin would say, your column today in "the post," i was stunned reading it. a petition on the white house's website, the we the people site, calling for an end to, quote, white genocide. >> yeah. >> and it clages there's an effort afoot to enforce
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intermarriage, take out white people. and it has like 300 people signing it. what is going on? >> so someone named albert d., but since i have written the piece he's now put his two initials and where he's from, from berkeley, california -- >> oh, you hurt me, you slay me with that one. >> that's your territory. january 11th, he puts this thing up. he says africa is for for instance, asia is for asians, white countries are for everybody and he thinks this is a violation of the united nations convention against genocide. so he's asking for the president of the united states to do something about it. when i first clicked on that link, there were 388 signatures -- signators to that petition. when we were talking about doing this segment, there were 404. when i clicked on to refresh to go sit in this chair, 405. that's up 17 in 24 hours. that's not a whole lot in the grand scheme of things, but it's
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way too many for the topic of this petition. >> although, you know, i think the guy with this petition may want to talk to risch limbaugh because it kind of seems like maybe their ideas are, you know, going to conflict a little bit about who should have guns and who doesn't need the guns. toure, the house republicans were at their retreat this weekend and a lot of introspection they were talking about -- >> do i get to talk about the petition? i want to talk about the petition. >> if you can work it into your answer, you can talk about it. >> all right. thank you, karen. >> a big part of what they're trying to emphasize in virginia at a plantation, you know, was about minorities and women and how to do better in their outreach. with what rush said today, with this petition on white genocide. if they were sincere, there are plenty of things they could come out and sort of take a moment as leaders to say, hey, that doesn't represent our party. >> but that would kind of be like mcdonald's trying to sell truly healthy food and thus annoying their customers who
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truly want -- >> mcdonald's sells salad. what are you talking about? >> it's a party built to attract the white working class. when they start to do outreach to black and brown people, to women, to gay americans, then they're sort of not dealing with what their core is looking for, and to go back to jonathan's point with the white genocide petition which i'm not sure when this white genocide actually ever started, but i've been reading this book called "the cause," a history of the progressive movement in america. and you see over and over in there's this moment when white people rise up and say this race thing is a zero sum game. the blacks or the brown hispanic americans are suddenly winning the game. we are losing the game. wove to take back what's rightfully ours. sometimes they're doing this around busing, affirmative action. it just changes.
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even if you go back to the 1800s, in the first days after slavery, they're saying haven't we given them enough? how much more dot we have to give them? so you see this sort of racial anxiety coming out over and over, and this white genocide petition is just that more. like they are trying to kill us, and we must stop them. >> it's so destructive. i go back to what colin powell was talking about over the weekend and looking at how he was vilified. the only thing the man did was speak the truth. some of what he was talking about in terms of iraq i didn't agree with, but certainly he had the guts to talk about guns. he had the guts to talk about this vein of intolerance, and then all of a sudden they just, boom, abandon this man that they once wanted to run for president. >> it would be courageous. it would be american. it would be amazing to see people as people and to welcome all of america into the party that is america. >> a guy who is about to be reinaugurated on monday may have
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said something about that, radio snit. >> sure. i feel like democrats want to create rainbow coalitions and reach out to different sorts of people and the republicans have a really difficult time just even transacting with that idea and understanding how do we interrelate to what hispanic americans need, what black americans need? even talking -- >> americans, how about just calling everybody americans for starters. >> absolutely. you know there are certain policy that is women might need a little more, that black people might need a little more. even talking to rank and file conservatives about these issues, it seems they just don't understand, like you're talking about physics to a person who understands basic math. yonds what you're talking about. >> it's really not that hard. that's what i keep trying to tell them. switching gears completely sort of, one of the big stories this week and i know everybody is trying to see how i'm going to pronounce this has to do with manti te'o. >> nice, stuck the landing. >> the linebacker for notre dame. this is serious now. who may have been the victim of a bizarre online scram involving
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a fictitious girlfriend. >> or may not have. >> you may not think this has anything to do with birtherism or the president, but if you think that, you aren't watching fox news. take a look. >> but talk about the media for a second. you know, i can think of another hawaiian guy who has been given a little bit of a pass, softball questions, fact checks not happening because -- >> wait a minute. who might that be? >> what? all right. so a new -- a new poll -- >> wow sgroon yea. >> yeah. that was a big leap. there's a new poll out that shows that more people -- this whole birther conspiracy may be more widespread than we thought. 64% of republicans say obama is hiding something about his past. when is this story line ever going away? >> you know, i would think at this point people would say this is clearly an american. he's clearly one of us, but i think there's a very deep sort
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of difficulty with wrapping your head around a black person leading the nation. it's the difficulty of a lot of white americans -- not all, but many white americans who are holding these birtherist ideas to say that black people are fully part of this nation. >> also, jonathan, you have written a lot about this over the course of the last few years. i mean, so much of this has really been a part of delegitimatizing this president. it stix me this is a part of what this is all about and to some degree it has been very effective with a portion of the population. >> something to keep in mind about this poll we're talking about, it includes -- 64% includes people who don't consider the president to be an american, someone who was born not here but as the birthers believe in kenya, but it also encapsulates those who are in the donald trump school who think that the president is
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hiding something in his college transcripts and want him to release his college transcripts so we can see -- so he can prove that he had the chops to get into columbia university or had the chops to go to harvard law school which we all know the guy is wildly brilliant. of course he had the chops to get into both of those places. but i think the big problem here is that these conspiracy theories continue to thrive because there is no grown-up within the republican party to stand up and say enough of this. not speaker boehner, not mitch mcconnell, not eric cantor, kevin mccarthy. there's no one of stature within the republican party who is willing to stand up and say enough. the only person i remember really saying so in a direct fashion was former utah governor, former china ambassador jon huntsman. >> guys, we have to leave it there, although i guess i just
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want to say, i know, hopefully we will all be inspired to try to be one america again with the president's message on monday during the inauguration. thank you, toure. thank you, jonathan capehart. >> thanks. >> thank you. next, more from the sunny gop retreat in williamsburg. stay with us. >> a majority of americans agree with us on this. and by the way, so did ronald reagan. >> oh, take a cheap shot at ronald reagan. what are you trying to do? impress jodie foster? [ coughs ] shh! [ coughs ] shh! [ breathes deeply, wind blows ] this feels cool.
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instead. that's the whole, it wasn't me, i guess, strategy. of course, that means another debt ceiling debate is just three months away. joining us now, bill cohen, a columnist at bloomberg view and by phone we have nbc's luke russert in williamsburg, virginia, covering the house republicans. welcome to both of you. >> thank you, karen. >> luke, i want to start with you. republicans are calling it a plan, democratic leader nancy pelosi call it is a gimmick. it sounds more like -- i mean, my read initially was this is more like political posturing rather than a serious deal. what are you hearing down there? >> well, it certainly is something that's meant to try and force the senate to act. you know, the senate has not passed a suggest in over 1,300 days and that's a popular rallying cry of the house gop. but what came out of this retreat was the idea instilled in members that it's probably not beneficial with the republican brand so damaged nationally to have a real standoff over the debt limit. this is a way they're trying to
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get passed that, a three-month extension. they're not demanding any cuts. all they're demanding is for the senate to have a budget by april 15th. in theory it sounds something less shall we say -- it's less trying to instill anger in democrats, but you saw when harry reid said he was reassured they're moving away from their all-or-nothing proposition. but overall what this is trying to do is give the house the ability to pass an extension and say to the house or senate if they don't move further, we've done our job, now it's up to you guys. there's definitely some posturing involved. >> at a time when we're seeing so many positive indicators, good news on the housing front, jobless claims are down, this kind of kicking the can down the road does not seem to be the kind of thing that would reassure small businesses or markets, wall street, anybody. >> well, look, it's better than not kicking the can down the
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road. it's better than having that debate right now because i think everybody on wall street and everybody who is in business thinks this is the silliest debate we could possibly be having right now. so to try to tie it to a budget proposal which is probably long overdue as we know, four years, is probably not a bad idea, but it's not nearly the same as not having this debate at all. so markets hate that. bankers hate that. businessmen hate that. this is not the kind of debate na anybody wants to have, and i think it's a clear concession by those recalcitrant republicans that they don't really want to be blamed for having that debate anymore so they're going to try to kick it over to the senate. >> center for american progress, we were talking about the cutting side and the spending side and republicans now i think are trying to say, okay, i guess we'll do this three-month deal, then we want a budget but we have to go to the cutting side and the president is not getting credit for quite a bit of cutting he's already done. center for american progress put together some great numbers on this, and they basically showed, including caps on future growth, nearly three-quarters of the
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spending cuts have come from spending cuts and that amounts to about $2.5 trillion, which is trillion with a "t," by the way, dollars in cuts. and yet you keep hearing boehner say that obama needs to get serious. you also hear them when they talk about the lack of a budget. they seem to forget we did have the budget chrome aontrol act a continuing resolution, and they didn't make everybody happy but they kept spending at previous levels. >> everybody forgets how much has been already cut out of the budget. that's the point of that study and, of course, paul krugman reiterated that deficits are actually not bad, especially when you're in a recessionary environment and that we've actually cut a lot out of the spending. but my concern in all this, while $2.4 trillion is a lot of money to cut over ten years, i'm still concerned about the absolute amount of the debt outstanding which is $16.4 trillion because we've been getting a big break in recent
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years because the fed has kept interest rates so low. when those interest rates start ticking up, as they would when they end their quaun at this taf easing program and as they would if we don't get the debt ceiling raised, then that cost of interest expense is going to go through the roof. we could be spending as much as $500 billion a year on interest expense alone and that is not a good thing. >> all right. nbc's luke russert and bill cohen -- william cohen, sorry. thank you so much for joining me. next, we'll go to the bous for all of the last-minute detai details. for you... ♪white house for all of the last-minute details. inging the heartburn blues. hold on, prilosec isn't for fast relief. cue up alka-seltzer. it stops heartburn fast. ♪ oh what a relief it is!
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this is the last friday of the president's first term, and prepses are under way right now for his second inaugural address on monday. it's been a busy day for republicans and democrats as they haggle over raising the
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debt ceiling or not. let's get the latest from kristin welker at the white house. hey, kristin. >> hey, karen. >> there's been some serious stuff, this back and forth today between the white house and john boehner and harry reid and nancy pelosi. is there any response that you're getting from the white house to this latest, quote, unquote pru unquote, plan that the republicans have put forward? >> reporter: the white house is sort of echoing what you're hearing from majority leader reid which is they're encouraged by the fact that the republicans seem to be moving on this issue and willing to increase the debt ceiling. however, i think what is going to be a problem from the white house's perspective is that three months. i was speaking with a senior administration official a little earlier today and he sort of reiterated the fact that the president is opposed to this idea of increasing the debt ceiling in these small increments because it creates crises every couple of months. so that could be a potential problem moving forward, but what is significant i think in the eyes of the white house is house
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speaker john boehner has sort of abandoned this idea to increase the debt ceiling and tie it to dollar to dollar spending cuts. so from their perspective that represents some movement. i have been talking to my republican sources who say they feel confident that this plan to increase the debt ceiling and then to also sort of force congress' hand on the budget in three months is something that could get through both houses. we'll have to see. i expect that all of this debating will sort of be on pause on monday and then we'll see it ramp back up a little later on next week. >> it will either be on pause or there will be the side bar conversations in the green room. i need to talk to you. >> exactly. >> so speaking of monday, the united states has had 44 presidents but only 17 of those have gotten to give that second inaugural address. i have heard rumors that the -- from the white house that the speech is meant to be more soaring rhetoric, not necessarily the sort of specifics that you might hear during a state of the union. what are you hearing and what
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are you hear being how the president is working on this speech? >> reporter: that's what i'm hearing also. president obama has been working on this speech for a little while now. he's deeply involved in the writing process, along with his key speech writers, jon favreau and the others. i'm told he has a pretty good working draft at this point, and to what you just brought up, karen, white house officials are saying that this speech is going to sort of deal with some of the broader themes that president obama talked about on the campaign trail. he's going to talk about the need for the country to come together. we'll probably reiterate his call to sort of get rid of sort of partisan divides that have been sort of creating so much trouble here in washington. so that will be a big theme. and he might talk about some of his larger policy initiatives like immigration reform and gun control reform, but he's not going to get into a whole lot of specifics. i think you're absolutely right. he's going to kind of touch on the broader themes of all those points. >> i can't wait to see what dress the first lady will be
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wearing on monday night. kristin welker, thank you so much. we'll see you monday. >> reporter: thanks. i look forward to that, too. thanks, karen. >> we'll be right back. need for protein increases, yet many of us don't meet our daily protein needs? that's why there's boost® high protein nutritional drink. each delicious serving provides fifteen grams of protein to help maintain muscle and help meet expert recommended daily protein needs. plus it provides twenty-six essential vitamins and minerals and is gluten-free. help get the nutrition you need with a complete and balanced nutritional drink. try boost® high protein. also available in powder. this has been medifacts for boost®. is efficiently absorbed in small continuous amounts. citracal slow release continuously releases calcium plus d with efficient absorption in one daily dose. citracal slow release. we create easy-to-use, powerful trading tools for all. look at these streaming charts!
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